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RE: TIFF as accessibility option

From: DavidSloan <DSloan@computing.dundee.ac.uk>
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2007 16:45:15 -0000
Message-ID: <367E3D6D231B1E4AA26E8486025B4751197530@mailex.computing.dundee.ac.uk>
To: "Christophe Strobbe" <christophe.strobbe@esat.kuleuven.be>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
This is interesting - while not an answer to Christophe's question, I was involved in a review of the accessibility of the UK JSTOR web site back in 2000. We straightaway noticed the inaccessibility of the service to people who couldn't read the images of scanned journal pages - back then as I recall the alt attribute provided for images of pages was something like "a picture of this page".

Also, even then there was a document text search option which meant that textual versions of each journal did exist, though the site also explained why they did not make these text versions available to users - a policy that looks like it still exists 7 years on.


-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org on behalf of Christophe Strobbe
Sent: Mon 3/5/2007 4:16 PM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: TIFF as accessibility option


JSTOR is a not-for-profit organisation that maintains an archive of 
scholarly journals. Journal articles are presented as one web page 
per printed page, with the "text" of the article presented in a GIF 
file. (Alt text is something like "Page [3] of Modern Language 
Journal, Vol. 75, No. 1, 1991".) When you choose to download an 
article, you have two options: PDF (recommended; you can choose 
between high-quality and fax-quality resolution) or "Accessibility 
Option - TIFF Format". The PDF contains the text of the article in 
the form of scanned images. There are no plain text or HTML-versions 
available, even though JSTOR uses raw text versions for indexing. The 
text after the link to the TIFF file says: "This image based file 
type is designed for use with assistive technology such as document 
scanner/readers like Kurzweil, OCR programs, or screen magnifiers." 
There is also a link to instructions on how to use this option 
(<http://www.jstor.org/help/tiff-download.html>). Hence, JSTOR claims 
that they meet WCAG 1.0 Level 1: "In addition to the improving the 
accessibility of the archived journal content in JSTOR through the 
creation of the TIFF download option, JSTOR is now compliant with 
Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and W3C WAI Priority 1 
standards" (<http://www.jstor.org/about/accessibility.html>).

Does anybody on this list know of similar practices (and false 
claims) in journal publishing or archiving?

Best regards,

Christophe Strobbe

Christophe Strobbe
K.U.Leuven - Departement of Electrical Engineering - Research Group 
on Document Architectures
Kasteelpark Arenberg 10 - 3001 Leuven-Heverlee - BELGIUM
tel: +32 16 32 85 51

Disclaimer: http://www.kuleuven.be/cwis/email_disclaimer.htm

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Received on Monday, 5 March 2007 16:55:01 UTC

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